By Crashy McCrashface
Epigraph: “You won’t have a name when you ride the big airplane.” --Woody Guthrie
Word-clipping can make you cray-cray, even if particular instances are abso gorge.
Before Einstein was well-known, his driver would take him from lecture to lecture and sit in on each till he knew the three basic talks by heart. He made a bet with Einstein, so at the next lecture, he and Einstein swapped places, the driver “Einstein” giving the lecture as the real Einstein sat unrecognized in the audience. Sure enough, the fake Einstein gave a word-perfect rendition of the talk. At the end, a listener raised his hand and asked a question. “Hah!” the imposter responded. “The question is so elementary I’m going to let my driver answer it!”
Gabriel (Hebrew, “God is my strength”) is a humaniform angel whom God uses to announce or reveal things to humans.
"Quozzy is a Zif. Are you Quozzy? Are you a Zif?" (Voice-to-text version of “‘Quasi’ is ‘as if.’ Are you ‘quasi’? Are you ‘as if’?”)
“Having a baby in Paris gave me a crash course in socialized medicine—and a new, very French definition of ‘costly.’” --Claire Lundberg
T-Shirt: “Everything is just great.”
A tour service promises “memories that last a lifetime or your money back.”
As a poor substitute for more mysterious African aphorisms, here are a few pangrams.
“Barkeep! A flaming tequila swizzle and a vodka with Ajax, hold the cherry!”
“New job: fix Mr. Gluck’s hazy TV, PDQ!”
“Jaded zombies acted quaintly, but kept driving the oxen forward.”
“You go tell that vapid existentialist quack, Freddy Nietzsche, that he can just bite me -- twice!”
December 17 is an odd date, and December 18 is an even date. Every year has several more odd dates than even dates.
Why isn’t the 80/20 rule called the 4/1 rule?
“More majorem” is Latin for “in the traditional manner” (literally, “in the manner of the elders”). "More" is pronounced "maw-ray."
The dramatist Dennis Potter once said, “The trouble with words is that you never know whose mouths they’ve been in.”
The book group gradually morphed into a snack club that called itself “The Ring of the Nibbling.”
Anent Bob Dylan’s Nobel Prize, George Will writes:
“Scottish novelist Irvine Welsh (Trainspotting) professes himself ‘a Dylan fan’ but tweeted that the Nobel is ‘an ill-conceived nostalgia award wrenched from the rancid prostates of senile, gibbering hippies.’ Strong letter to follow.”
“For all sad words of tongue and pen, The saddest are these, 'Your Order Has Not Shipped.’”
For irony fans: Patti Smith sang an aching rendition of Dylan’s “A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall” in which she forgot the lyrics to the second verse and had to stop briefly and start up again. One of the lyrics in the second verse is: “I will know my song well before I start singin’.”
When the start of the New Year was moved from March 1 back to January 1, it made nonsense of the names September, October, November, and December. Fortunately, it was harmless nonsense.
If Julius Caesar hadn’t picked the names January and February for the new eleventh and twelfth months he instituted, they might have been called Undecember and Duodecember (“eleven” and “twelve”). Then later when the start of each new year was advanced two months, we might have had two more nonsensically named months. We dodged that bullet.
I like mild oaths like “By the shores of Gitche Gumee!”
Tom Waits’s answer to the Problem of Evil (“If God is almighty and all-good, why do the innocent suffer?”):
God's away, God's away,
God's away on business.
In modern German, the middle day of the week is “Mittwoch” (“Midweek”). English retains the connection to the Norse god Woden (“Wednesday”).
“Always say less than necessary” is one of the laws in Robert Greene’s 1998 book “The 48 Laws of Power.” The idea is by taciturnity you project mystery, and mystery is power.
But the “law” is ridiculous. What point is there in saying, “Please pass the….”? I think what Greene means to say is: “Never say more than necessary” or “Speak as little as possible.” Author, heal thyself.
“Where is magic? In the ordinary, the commonplace, the everyday, the obvious. It’s a mistake to yearn for showy miracles. Better to grow ever more aware that everything within and around us is pure miracle.” --after Edward Abbey
The war between lazy dogs and robots is not yet a two-sided thing.
“The world can have messy American military interventions, or the world can have massacres. Those are the options.” --Jim Geraghty
“Trump is not a new broom sweeping clean, but a big wolf blowing the house down into rubble and splinters and shards.” --after Conrad Black. Rubble and splinters and shards? Oh, my.
“Sola dosis facit venenum.” (The dose alone makes the poison). Too much of a good thing can kill you?
“The employees of Cryogenics Unlimited are entitled to the best care the far future can offer.”
“Every year she searched and searched till she found a perfect ‘Charlie Brown tree.’ Then she made it into a thing of great beauty.”
“One of the oldest human needs is having someone to wonder where you are when you don't come home at night.” --Margaret Mead, anthropologist (1901-1978)
“The value of advice is not wholly dependent on the integrity of the advisor.” --Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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